Cross Post by Erin Kurt
Why is it easier to say something to our kids when we’re angry at them than when they are doing what we want them to do?
Picture a lazy Sunday afternoon and you’re reading your favorite magazine while sipping a cup of tea. Your children are in the next room playing a game together, having a wonderful time and getting along famously. What are the chances that you would get up, walk to the next room and say, “It’s so nice to see you two having such a great time together”? Probably slim. Why? Because when we parents are happy and content ourselves, we aren’t particularly motivated to move from what’s making us content.
Now imagine that your children in the next room begin screaming and arguing. Your heart begins to beat faster, anger begins to swell inside you and thoughts like, “What is going on? Why can’t they just play nicely? I was having such a relaxing time by myself!” begin to run through your head. Now you are motivated – you are MAD! What are the chances of you getting up, stomping into the next room and yelling at the kids to, “Be quiet!”?
Unfortunately, the outcome of this “Speak only when we see negative behavior Syndrome” is that our kids mostly hear from us when we have something negative to say rather than positive feedback. They receive the message that they are just annoying to us.
The antidote? Positive verbal and non-verbal reinforcement.
Here are 20 ways to show or tell your children that you appreciate their positive behaviors.
“Thanks for wiping the kitchen counter so nicely”
“I think you got ready for school in record time this morning!”
“I loved how you persevered after getting frustrated with your homework tonight.”
“I saw you on the soccer field. You played hard!”
“It was so nice dining out with you tonight.”
“Have I told you lately how much I appreciate how you keep your room so tidy?”
Give a rub on the back after your child has done something you asked.
Give your child a wink and a smile after they accomplish something difficult to show you are proud of them.
Give your child a thumb or two thumbs up after you see him/her completing a task around the house.
“Good job on that math test, Julie. I know you studied hard.”
“I’m so proud of how you _______________.”
“I’m so proud to call you my son/daughter.”
Write a special note and put it in your child’s desk at school.
Write a special note and put it in your child’s lunch bag.
Smile at your child and stroke their hair after they have made a good choice about something.
Buy a “just because” toy, game, or puzzle and attach a note or card expressing the reason you are giving the gift. Do they always hang up their coat which keeps your house tidy? Do they always finish their homework on time?
“That puppy really likes you!”
“Dad and I were so proud of the way you behaved tonight at our friend’s house. You were polite and tried to join in the conversation.”
“Wow, how creative. I like how you used the color purple here”
Leave a heart-shaped note in your child’s jacket pocket thanking him/her for a job well done on a task they always do around the house.
In order to remind themselves to use praise, some parents find it helpful to make a note and put it where they can see it often. The note might read, “notice the positive” or “catch ’em doing good.”.
Catch your kids being good. It will have a profound effect on the atmosphere in your home. Whatever it takes, I assure you it will be worth it.
How do you reinforce the behavior in your household? Let us know in the comments below!
Erin A. Kurt, Stress-Free Parenting Expert, is founder of ErinParenting.com and the author of Juggling Family Life: A Step-By-Step Guide to Stress-Free Parenting, the proven step-by-step program that shows you exactly how to raise happy, respectful and well-adjusted kids in just 3 steps…guaranteed. Erin has also recently launched the Stress-Free Parenting Club, a private, exclusive club for women. For other great tips and to receive her stress-free parenting articles on how to parent without yelling and get your kids to listen to you the first time, visit http://www.erinparenting.com.
I received the following email request from the Children’s Cancer Hospital for help in fundraising for the purchase of equipment required in setting up their own blood bank.
Alhamdolillah, we are establishing our own blood bank at CCH. Pakistan Baitul Mal and SSGC has recently helped us in getting main equipments. We are in need of some more equipments. Plz find the attached list of required equipments highlighted in yellow. I would appreciate if we can find the donors for these equipments. Looking forward for your help.
PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS EQUIPMENT CAN NOT BE BOUGHT FROM ZAKAT MONEY.
Alhamdulillah I have been informed that the team has received donations to cover all the equipment. You can still help the hospital by donating to their efforts.
Ever wonder why some days your kids just seem to test you, rebel against you or resist everything you ask of them? That happened to me a couple of days ago and I want to share with you how I resolved this issue.
My family has been on holidays for the past two weeks. Due to a variety of life circumstances, my hubby and I were in need of a huge break from regular life. So, the fact that we had grandparents around, ready and willing to look after our kids so that we could sleep in and generally do what we wanted without the kids, felt like a blessing. The problem? We forgot one of the most basic rules of good parenting.
Let me step back a bit before I go into that. You see, when I say that my hubby and I were sleeping in and doing what we wanted I also must add that personally, I just wanted to be on my own, without the kids. This may sound harsh because anyone who knows me knows that I adore my kiddies and I love spending time with them. However, the freedom of reading what I wanted and relegating all responsibility to my parents was kind of a nice break for a few days. For example, while we were out for a family walk I was holding my son’s hand yet my back started hurting a bit because my son was walking slower than me which made my back twist every time I took a step. So, I let his hand go and said, “Go hold daddy’s hand, my back hurts.” After a day of me unconsciously pushing him away I began to see some undesirable results.
That night, everything my husband and I asked him to do he resisted. He even used a snarky tone and said, “No, I won’t do that!” which is COMPLETELY out of character for him. What usually worked with him was not working and the resistance grew more and more as the night progressed. In fact, the evening ended with me putting the story book down at night and saying, “No story tonight. You’ve really disappointed me” and him crying.
Although this is difficult to share, as it is so unlike me (and him) I felt it important to share because this sometimes happens with the parents I coach. Everything is going great and then BOOM! Negative behaviour or resistance appears and they think their luck has run out and now this stage or age is going to be the difficult one. Until… I coach them on this important point.
Children’s main desire is to feel loved, and there are four ways that they feel loved.
During those couple of days, I had basically removed all focused attention, physically let go of his hand, and didn’t give much eye contact except to discipline him. Are you beginning to solve that problem I asked earlier? Wow! You must be a parenting coach! No, you see? Parenting isn’t rocket science. It’s just about knowing a few specific things, being reflective and then taking action.
After my husband and I reflected on my son’s behaviour, we realized that WE needed to step up and change a few things. So, the next morning my hubby got up when our son did and connected with him. Not in a major way, just asked him questions and showed interest in what he was talking about. Then I woke up, came over to him, looked him right in the eye to say, “Good Morning, Sweetie” while I rubbed his hair (there’s that physical contact!) and then proceeded to interact naturally with him and the rest of our family. Later that morning, we told him we were going to go to our friend’s house so we all had to get ready. The day before he would have refused, but today he was willing.
After we got dressed we walked to the car and I asked him, “Can I hold your hand?” His response? “Of course you can, Mommy!” While we walked in silence he then snuggled into me, kissed my hand, and said, “Mmm… cozy!”
Our son was amazing and polite the rest of the day and that evening I left his room the way we usually do. Then, the child who is usually too shy/reserved to go up and kiss people came out of his room and to each of us (grandma and grandpa included) asked if we would like a kiss! For him to do this on his own was shocking as it’s out of his comfort zone for sure.
Some parents might say, that’s it? That’s really ALL you did and his behaviour turned around? Yes. It really doesn’t take that much for kids to feel loved and WANT to intrinsically be have, be polite and be happy. They will show you they aren’t getting what they need from you by acting out. There is ALWAYS a reason.
So, the next time you notice your kids acting abnormally different or worse, take some time to reflect and see if your children are truly feeling loved using the 4 criteria above then watch the way things can just “magically” change.
Erin A. Kurt, Stress-Free Parenting Expert, is founder of ErinParenting.com and the author of Juggling Family Life: A Step-By-Step Guide to Stress-Free Parenting, the proven step-by-step program that shows you exactly how to raise happy, respectful and well-adjusted kids in just 3 steps…guaranteed. To get your F.R.E.E. video series and receive her stress-free parenting articles on how to parent without yelling and get your kids to listen to you the first time, visit http://www.erinparenting.com.
This article is taken from another source. Views expressed in this article are those of the author and may or may not be the views of From The Pulpit and DiscoMaulvi. To submit content for From The Pulpit, please email FromThePulpit [at] MuhammadAly [dot] Com.
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